So today, I believe we will be concluding our series on how to be the Lord’s witnesses, and I hope that you have been stirred to see the importance of our witness to the world.
We started off talking about the power that we have to even be the Lord’s witnesses in the first place and how the Holy Spirit is that power. We also looked at how we are called to be witnesses before we are ever called to go witnessing. Therefore, the necessity of bearing His fruit and gifts in our lives.
We have also been learning what it means to be the Lord’s witnesses and we have seen that this is a much bigger part of our purpose here on the earth than we’ve realized. In fact, aside from personal relationship with God, the reason we are here is to bear witness of the goodness & glory of God to the rest of God’s creation.
Then we began getting into some of the practical parts of being Christ’s witnesses such as how we can break through the darkness that has blinded the lost, how our spiritual sandals are this preparedness to share the gospel, and specifically where we are called to witness …
Now I would like to conclude this series with a couple of very practical things regarding how to be a witness—specifically how to actually witness to someone and how to prepare and give our testimony.
Let’s begin with how to be a witness …
HOW TO BE A WITNESS
I’ve found that far too many Christians are not very confident and even are downright terrified to witness about Christ to others. This should not be so, saints. Sharing the Gospel with others should be second nature to us and we should never shy away from telling others about the Lord. Yes, we should always be ready to share the good news and love others enough to give them the truth.
The apostle Paul said he was ready: In Romans 1:15, he said, “So, as much as is in me, I am ready to preach the gospel to you who are in Rome also.” This was after saying that he was a “debtor” to both Jews and Gentiles (vs. 14). In other words, he saw it like he owed it to, first, the Lord and then to every person to share the Gospel.
Church, I believe we are “debtors” as well. So, as the apostle Paul said, “as much as is in us” we need to be “ready” to share the Gospel. Amen?
Then Paul goes on to say in verse 16— “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek.”
Church, we have nothing to be ashamed of! For this Gospel is the power of God to salvation. There is no other way. So, if we do not share it, how can man be saved?
We have a corner on the truth, saints! So we need to be bold and confident and know that the Gospel that we are sharing is the answer, whether the world realizes it or not.
But we still need to know how to share this good news and there are some very practical things that I believe are essential to being as effective as possible. So let me quickly share with you some tips on how to witness to others …
Now these tips are not the only way to do it. As always, the most important thing is to be led by the Holy Spirit. However, these are just some good practical wise tips that generally are good methods when approaching others with the Gospel.
The first is that whether you are in the “in season” or “out of season” time, to always have your spiritual antenna up.
By “in season” times, I am referring to those times where you are actively out looking to witness to others. This would be when I am going somewhere for the purpose of witnessing to someone—that is, I’m participating in a group who is going out to share the Gospel or I personally am going to a Christian meeting looking to share the love of Christ with others.
Now the “out of season” times would describe other times where we are out and about to do something other than witness. Like maybe going to the hardware store to pick up a tool or going to a restaurant to pick up a meal. Of course, we should always be looking to witness, but that’s my point: We need to always have our antenna up, and pick up on when the Holy Spirit is targeting a specific person.
You see, the Holy Spirit knows people—and He knows when they are ripe for the pickin’. So if we would just stay in tune with the Holy Spirit, He will show us who to approach and how to approach them.
It just goes back to the old adage—just be LED. The Holy Spirit is here to lead & guide us into all truth. Those who the sons of God, are called to be led by the Spirit of God. So when it comes to witnessing, being led by the Holy Spirit is key to being effective. By having our antenna up, we will be in the right place at the right time to share with the right person.
Secondly, after the Holy Spirit identifies the person or persons we are to share with, I believe a good rule of thumb is to start out the conversation with less “in your face” topics of conversation.
Now of course, a lot of this is determined by the time & situation. Sometimes you might need to move in a little quicker because time is of the essence. But if you have the time, I think it is better to start off the conversation with something that shows the person that you really do love them and care about them.
You see, there’s nothing worse than someone who just gets right into their sell. If you show actual care and concern for someone, I believe that most people will be more apt to hear what you want to tell them.
So, if you can, start off the conversation with something like— “Hey, is there anything I can pray with you about? Is there something you would like me to ask God for you?” Or you could simply show concern by asking them “How they are doing?” and make sure to tell them that you are not just asking to ask, but you really want to know.
The possibilities are limitless, but I’ve just found that a softer more loving approach is the best way to earn entrance into sharing the truth with people. And, in fact, if we are doing this right, the real reason we want to share the Gospel with them is because we do love them and want God’s best for them.
Thirdly, I would add that we need to listen in our heart to the Holy Spirit and pay attention to the pictures He is showing you.
What I mean by this is that when you and I have approached the person, we need to be listening to them, yes, but at the same time listening in our heart for things that the Holy Spirit would give us to share with them.
I’d also add that we need to pay attention to any pictures He might show us. It’s not always going to be words we hear from Him. Sometimes, we might see things in our hearts and while we cannot always make sense of what they mean, the person we are speaking to might be able to.
Many times, I have communed with the Holy Spirit in my heart while carrying on a conversation with someone. I’ll even ask Him questions in my mind, knowing that I need specifics from Him to better help the person I have in front of me.
I’ve had the Holy Spirit give me some really good things to share with people—some stuff that I never thought of before.
As you’ve heard me say already in the series, the Holy Spirit is “witnessing made fun!” And if we would just listen to Him, He can give us creative ways to evangelize and share the Gospel with others. He will do this through the various gifts that He gives us and through wisdom that was outside of ourselves.
And next, one very important thing to do when witnessing to someone is to keep it simple. You know … that old K.I.S.S. acronym … KEEP IT SIMPLE, SAINT (No, not stupid). Yes, we need to keep the Gospel simple, saints, by not overcomplicating the message, but simply sharing the things we have seen and the things we know.
You see, the devil will try and get us over into what we don’t know—he will do this by trying to convince us that we don’t know enough to share with others and he will also stir up those we might be sharing with to try and show us what we don’t know. Don’t fall prey to that.
Simply share the truth you do know, which is Jesus, His love for us, and your own personal testimony. As we’ve learned, these simple truths are what overcomes the devil in others.
Now when it comes to sharing our testimony, I believe there are some very important things we need to know …
For one, we need to realize that every born-again believer HAS a testimony. I’ve run into a lot of Christians that don’t believe that they really have a testimony because they maybe were brought up in a Christian home and never did some of the things that others did like coming out of a lifestyle of drug & alcohol abuse or being saved out of a life filled with committing what we consider to be the “big” sins, etc. No, the fact is, we all have a testimony, and all of our stories, which are different, can be used to help people who likewise have come from different backgrounds.
For example, if you are someone who might not have had a dramatic conversion, being raised in church and receiving the Lord at an early age, you should still have an “ah-ha” moment where your eyes were opened to know something about the Lord, right? Maybe it was when you received the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Maybe it was when you came to realize some truth like how your religious deeds do not justify you, how much God loves you, etc. It can even be when you received some healing or miracle in your life as a Christian. There are so many things we’ve experienced in our lives that can be used to help witness to others.
So I’d encourage everyone to think about what these things are. Go back and remember the various experiences you’ve had with the Lord and the things He’s done in you and revealed to you. In fact, you’ll be amazed at how much it encourages you to recount these things. Yes, the memory of all that the Lord has done in your life will stir you up in your soul!
But my point is that we all have a testimony to share with others. We might need to recall what these evidences of Jesus are in our lives, but they are there, nonetheless. Stir up the memory of these things, saints!
Now when we look at our testimony from this much broader scope, we ought to realize that we all have multiple testimonies we can share. So I believe a good practice is to write all of them down separately—perhaps in a journal. Yes, either put them on paper or save a file of them electronically.
One of the reasons I believe it is important to write our testimonies out is because it can stir up our minds to remember things. Not only that, but it can cement the memory of those things by simply writing or typing them.
Personally, this is how I discovered that God had gifted me to write as well as speak because as I began to put truths on paper, I realized how it flowed so easily. Perhaps you have a gift within you to write that hasn’t been discovered simply because you haven’t given it a try.
But another reason it is good to write out our testimonies is because it’s just good to be prepared.
You know, some of us are ramblers and most of the world has short attention spans. So that’s not a good combination. Therefore, it’s good to have our testimonies written out in a short and concise manner—no, not so that we can read it to others, but so we have them hidden in our hearts and, therefore, are prepared to share it quickly and efficiently.
Now we have our long, detailed testimony that we might get the opportunity to share with someone if we have an hour or so to sit down with them. But these times are few and far between when it comes to evangelism. What most of us will run into when trying to win people to Christ are the shorter five to fifteen minute time frame that we have to share our testimony. Those are the ones that we need to be differently prepared for.
So let me give you some tips on how to write out these shorter versions of your testimony:
So basically what you are mapping out is the before, the after, and the line in between that divided between the before and after.
Now here are some other helpful hints to writing out your testimony – whether it’s the short or long version:
So, in review, my four tips for effective witnessing are this:
If we will simply walk in these four simple guidelines for witnessing, I believe we can be very effective in testifying of and for the Lord.